NORTHBROOK, Ill., Oct. 15, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- The winner of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) 2020 Pediatric Cardiology Research Fellowship Award, funded by The Children's Heart Foundation, the nation's leading organization dedicated to funding congenital heart defect research, has been selected.
David Staudt, MD, PhD, Pediatric Cardiology Fellow at Stanford University, will receive the award, which is made possible by an educational grant from The Children's Heart Foundation. This award provides research support for an individual who has demonstrated aptitude for basic science or clinical science research during their pediatric cardiology fellowship.
"As an aspiring physician-scientist in Pediatric Cardiology, I aim to investigate the molecular and genetic mechanisms of congenital heart disease and pediatric heart failure, with the hopes of eventually developing new therapies to help heart function in these diseases," said Staudt.
Staudt's research, titled, "Unraveling the Molecular Modifiers of Hypertrophic and Restrictive Cardiomyopathy", aims to examine what factors interact with pathogenic mutations to determine whether a patient develops Hypertrophic or Restrictive Cardiomyopathy at the cellular level.
"Heart disease in children can be caused by genetic mutations. However, having a mutation does not guarantee that a patient develops a particular disease," Staudt explains. "This proposal is novel in that it represents, to my knowledge, the first study that directly addresses whether a patient's genetic background determines the Hypertrophic vs. Restrictive phenotype."
Congenital heart defects, or CHDs, are America's most common birth defect. Nearly 40,000 babies are born with a CHD each year in the United States; this equates to one child every 15 minutes. The Children's Heart Foundation and the AAP have joined together to promote understanding of cardiovascular disease in children through this award, which represents a tremendous opportunity for junior faculty in pediatric cardiology to gain research experience.
"The Children's Heart Foundation is proud to grant this award each year to a pediatric cardiology fellow showing promise in advancing the diagnosis, treatment, and care of all individuals living with CHDs," said Barbara Newhouse, President and CEO of The Children's Heart Foundation. "We're excited to see what Dr. Staudt uncovers in this genetic study."
About The Children's Heart Foundation
The Children's Heart Foundation is the country's leading organization solely dedicated to funding congenital heart defect research. The mission of The Children's Heart Foundation is to advance the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of CHDs by funding the most promising research. Since 1996, The Children's Heart Foundation has funded more than $13 million of CHD research and scientific collaborations. For more information, visit childrensheartfoundation.org and follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and LinkedIn.
About the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP)
The American Academy of Pediatrics is an organization of 67,000 primary care pediatricians, pediatric medical subspecialists and pediatric surgical specialists dedicated to the health, safety and well-being of infants, children, adolescents and young adults. For more information, visit www.aap.org and follow us on Twitter @AmerAcadPeds.